- Dentsu Aegis Network, one of the big five ad agency holding companies, acquired Oxyma Group, a performance marketing agency in the Netherlands and Dubai, per a press release.
- Oxyma will be rebranded Merkle, and all agencies under its umbrella as Merkle companies. The acquisition will complement Merkle’s EMEA business with core services including delivering personalization at scale through CRM, loyalty, digital, and media for clients in the media, telecom, retail, travel & leisure, utility, CPG, financial services and automotive industries. Unilever is a key Oxyma client along with Air France KLM, Audi, Liberty Global, and Vodafone.
- The deal gives Merkle global scale and an immediate entrance into the Netherlands and Dubai markets, a capability David Williams, chairman and CEO, Merkle, said was “critically important in executing on our mission of extending Merkle’s people-based marketing capabilities across EMEA,” in a statement.
While traditional agency holding companies are currently facing rough waters as digital continues to disrupt marketing strategy and the supporting ecosystem, the move from Dentsu indicates that the major players aren’t shying away from deals that bolster capabilities and geographic reach. Merkle is already a leader in data-driven marketing and as demands grow louder from brands for meaning insights into their digital investments, purchasing Oxyma is meant to provide scale and global reach to these efforts.
Dentsu Aegis Network delivered almost 60% of gross profit from digital during the first nine months of its 2017 fiscal year, the company recently said. The strength in digital points to the company's focus on providing data-driven marketing solutions to real people through Merkle's M1 data platform, which is driving new business, according to Dentsu Inc.'s President and CEO Toshihiro Yamamoto, in a statement.
Merkle's M1 platform, which is currently rolling out, leverages 280 million consumer IDs based on personally identifiable information and is integrated with Dentsu's programmatic platform, promising one-to-one marketing at scale.
The acquisition will enhance Dentsu’s digital media business in the Dutch market and will offer opportunities in the “intersection between” CRM, data, technology, and performance marketing, stated Julius Minnaar, CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network Netherlands, in a statement.
Oxyma was founded in 2000 and has headquarters in Rotterdam along with offices in Amsterdam, Breda and Dubai. Its 300-plus employees will all join Merkle, bringing the agency’s EMEA business to more than 1,000 employees.